You may have already guessed this, but I am not a summer person! The crisp winter weather is much more my style. However, one thing I do like about this blessedly short season of summer is all the fresh vegetables.
We signed up for the summer CSA program through Grey Arrow Farms this year, and the veggies have been amazing. Beets, carrots, lettuce, micro-greens, radishes, swiss chard, and more have been filling our fridge, With the little heat we’ve had, my itty bitty garden has finally started to grow, so I have an abundance of thyme, rosemary, & basil. The hot weather also comes with the staggering urge to avoid turning on the oven at all.
The solution to all the summer cooking woes is pasta salad. That’s right. Pasta. Salad. You can make a gigantic pot of pasta and throw in all your veggies & herbs and live off sweet, delicious carbs for the next week. Here’s how to make it:
Start off by cooking as much pasta as humanly possible. Use whatever variety speaks to you - fusilli, spaghetti, orzo, macaroni…the possibilities are endless.
Cut up a ton of veggies & throw them in a bowl with the noodles. Add some fresh herbs. Toss in some cubed cheese (or meat, if that’s your jam). Go crazy.
Think about what sort of sauce you love. Put that sauce on your pasta salad.
It really is that simple. I’ve posted three of my fav combos below - try them all, or make up your own!
Tasty Tahini (like the sauce)
Add-ins: peppers, zucchini, cherry tomatoes, sliced cucumber, corn, edamame or peas
Sauce: 1/2 cup tahini, 1/2 cup apple cider vinegar, 1/4 cup nutritional yeast, 1 garlic clove, salt & pepper to taste. Whiz it all up in the food processor and drizzle over pasta. Top with fresh basil (or cilantro, if you’re gross)
Add-ins: kalamata olives, capers, cherry tomatoes, sun-dried tomatoes, grated Parmesan cheese, dill or basil. You can also sub out the Parm for bits of mozzarella or bocconcini)
Sauce: 1/2 cup olive oil, 1/2 cup balsamic vinegar, salt & pepper to taste
Oh the Pesto-bilities
Pasta: Orzo or macaroni
Add-ins: micro-greens, chopped kale, broccoli, peppers
Sauce: all the pesto - basil pesto is a big hit in our house